Barren County resident completes research project
DANVILLE, KY -- Knob Lick resident Ben Jessie is one of seven Centre College students honored this year in the John C. Young Scholars program. The program provides a stipend for outstanding seniors to collaborate with a Centre professor in advanced research. All of the scholars will present their results in a campus symposium set for May 15.
Jessie is majoring in chemistry, and he has collaborated this year with Dr. Joe Workman, assistant professor of chemistry. Workman is an organic chemist, and he is pursuing long-term research on the chemical make-up of liquid crystals, which are widely known for the LCDs (liquid crystal displays) essential to many watches, calculators and computers. Workman is attempting to find a way to alter the crystals to make them metal-bearing, which would make it possible to have color and magnetic properties in the LCDs.
Jessie has assisted Workman in on-going laboratory work that involves staging a series of chemical reactions and evaluating the results, keeping meticulous records along the way.
The John C. Young project is the latest in a series of academic honors for Jessie, who is a
graduate of Barren County High School. He won national competition to receive a Goldwater Scholarship and, at Centre, was named to Phi Beta Kappa. He also received the Organic Chemistry Prize and was named to the dean's list.
Jessie completed a summer of research with Workman and also traveled to San Salvador Island during the 1998 winter term for research on marine life with Centre biology professor Michael Barton. During the summer of 1998, he was chosen for a research team at the University of Utah.
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